Blogging 101: If you want to be a popular blogger for the right reasons, it’s best not to blog about certain topics. Especially religion and politics. Good advice. Frankly, I choose not to blog about politics or religion or any other extremely personal topics. Besides, there are already gazillions of other topics to write about anyway! And, when it comes to sensitive and highly charged topics – for me – it doesn’t stop at blogging.
Neutral Business Networking 101: This very same, self-imposed censorship also goes for bathroom breaks during seminars and lectures, networking events, plus any other 'meet and greet' professional environments. Obviously, with the name of our next President being decided in a few short weeks, the state of our Country and the outcome of the election are on the minds of most Americans right now. Of course, we all have our own political viewpoints. However, when it comes to politics, I prefer not to debate the issues with people I've just met. Yep, I think I'll just keep my insightful opinions to myself. So, why is this such a difficult concept for some people to understand?
"Does This Dress Make Me Look Fat?" C’mon guys – does answering this question ever truly have a happy ending? “Somebody Save Me!" or "Oh Geez, Please Don’t Ask Me That Question!” are probably just two of the desperate responses that quickly come to mind. Well, now you know precisely how I feel when a business 'acquaintance' begins chatting about political affiliations, candidate agendas, or the last four years. In my experience, these types of discussions can easily become heated, they rarely seem to conclude amicably, and feelings may sometimes get hurt. Plus, as with the dress scenario referenced above – once a statement leaves your mouth – it's out there. Forever. Something to think about the next time you're sleeping on the couch.
"Just When I Thought I Was Out … They Pull Me Back In." Remember when Al Pacino delivered that line in The Godfather III? Once in awhile, after I tell someone I really don’t want to talk about politics, we’ll slowly start to converse about other things. Then suddenly, wouldn’t you know it – we’re back to politics again! Trust me, when I say "Let's not talk about politics," I really, really, mean it. Perhaps I need to express myself a little differently: "Being pulled into a conversation which I recognize may be potentially filled with nothing but rhetorical landmines could be detrimental to our relationship – and my health." Whoa! I'm sure nobody would want to talk to me about anything after uttering that statement! I suppose I should keep working on it.
Why don't we chat about something a little more innocuous? Like sports, for instance.